Showing posts from 2017


Sauti Sol attempted to speak out about politics two days ago and it backfired spectacularly but also showed us where we are as a country. I feel that Sauti Sol are disconnected from Kenya and Kenyans. I disagree with the amalgamation of lack of education and political affiliation. Their reductionist attitude towards ignorance based on slogans and their lack of appreciation for people's democratic right to support either of the two parties. I get what they were trying to do; remain neutral and call for agenda based discussions but they ended up with condescending platitudes which wound up everyone. They sound like they live in a different country and are feeling sorry for the mere mortals down here. They might have it in their best interest to do a bit of consultations before doing a post like this again. I feel like they need to understand why people are on the streets. I feel like they need to understand disenfranchisement and why people are looking for hope and what politi

Protesters Are Not Stupid

We equate protests/civic action to poverty. We equate poverty to unintelligence. Our online interactions clearly and sadly show it. Pauline Aoko, a career (26 years) demonstrator by her own self confession, was interviewed on KTN today. She is a middle-aged lady from Kibera who was preparing for her weekly tear gas supplements. When asked why she was going to the street, she said that she was fighting for her rights for a good and that she was prepared to die for it. She said that her kids asked her what would happen to them if she the police killed her during the protests and she told them that she will have died fighting for their rights. That threw me off but I understood it a bit more. Kenyans are suffering. Kenyans are feeling the sustained and ever- expanding gap between the rich and the poor. Kenyans are feeling the effects of social and economic marginalisation that has taken place by regime after regime. In spite of devolution, the county governments still get a paltry 12


I feel like we are taking David Ndii's call for secession too literally and completely missing the point. I believe this was an article meant to spark uncomfortable conversations and inspire thoughts on the state of our nation but we would need to think about it beyond individuals and emotions, first. We need to start addressing David Ndii's reasons for calling for secession and stop the sideshows and victim mentality. If you're feeling offended then you're part of the problem Kenya is not a nation. Kenyatta senior and his thieving cronies lost their chance to unite Kenya at independence and we are paying for it ever since. We have had 2 tribes leading Kenyans since independence and we have great economic instability that is tearing this country apart somewhere at the border of Central Kenya and Rift Valley. This might boil down to the fact that we do not acknowledge Kikuyu and Kalenjin privilege. It's pretty hard to see privilege when you're in it an


This is a good time to realise the power of stereotypes and their role in the dehumanisation of others to the point of indifference in death. The narrative of Luos as violent hooligans has led to a very dull national response to their plight because we figure that in some way they deserve it and why were they going to protest anyway. Our biases have bypassed our logical interrogation sense and has blinded us to the reality of targeted killings, police brutality and what I would call something short of crimes against humanity. This is however the most effective and time-tested way of hardening masses and creating opposition that you cannot handle. Even at full capacity, the armed forces cannot possibly handle an all-out uprisal and once the people realise that, only then will they realise the power that they hold. The level of violence we are currently witnessing is not quelling unrest. There has hardly been any unrest. The protests in Kibera were nonviolent.No shop


We judge the effectiveness or admirability of women in politics by their ability to withstand oppression, suffering and violence meted out by society. We tell women to look up to Wangari Mathai and use her as an example of women who didn’t have power handed to her on a silver platter but instead fought for it. We have glorified struggle as a necessity for change and have used it as a reason to maintain the status quo and normalize the oppression of women as a part of society. We use examples of icons like Wangari Maathai to speak out against affirmative action. She would be ashamed. In the light of increased women in spheres of public influence both in public service and in the corporate world, we are deluded to think that gender equity has been achieved. We are not even close. There several structural and systemic factors that ensure that women are not at the same level as men when competing for the same positions and perhaps if we understood them a bit more the


The formation of the Independent Police Oversight Authority in 2011 was a great step forward but why they still don't have prosecutorial powers baffles me. IPOA was created to allow for civilian oversight over the National Police Service Commission which had been a law unto itself for ages letting police kill,maim and harass with absolutely no consequences. IPOA has the ability to summon and investigate but it's up to the Office of the Deputy Prosecutor,at its discretion, to prosecute or to do what it normally does to police; nothing. It's not particularly surprising though because of the structural and functional bond that the two share creating a blaring and inexcusable and perpetual conflict of interest. Police work hand in hand with the prosecutors everyday and rely on each other to function so how could they possibly be able to be independent of each other. A massive shift is needed in the way the criminal justice system works in regards to po


Something changed with men. Sometime before I was born, a massive shift happened. Somewhere along the way the bond between fathers and children was broken and it's having a direct effect on society. Men's relationship with their children has changed greatly over the past few decades ironically in an era where we feel that children and parents are breaking barriers and should be getting closer and understanding each other. If we look at history, a few decades ago, in the Mau Mau era,many of the veterans raised children who were not theirs when they came back home. Some of the women had been raped by the home guards but some of them had gotten into arrangements through their mother in laws to get men to have children with so that the soldiers would come and find a 'home'-meaning complete with children. A lot of the soldiers would come back home,empty the few bullets they had left into their wives and then disappear for another few months or years but


Sex with a minor, under 18 has always been a dicey topic but Criminal Appeal 32 of 2015 shows just how far we have to go "It is true that under the Sexual Offences Act, a child below 18 years old cannot give consent to sexual intercourse. However, where the child behaves like an adult and willingly sneaks into men's houses for purposes of having sex, the court ought to treat such a child as a grown up who knows what she is doing. The appellant was 23 years old when the incident occurred as per the pre bail report. It would be unfair to have the appellant serve 20 years behind bars yet PW1 was after sex from him. The evidence does not show that the appellant knew that PW1was a student or that the appellant took advantage of PW1 being a young girl. It is clear to me that PW1 started engaging in sex way before that date. It is possible that PW3 saw his sister enjoying sex with the appellant at 1.00 am." Thi


A lot of us don't see our parents as people. People who are scared,who love,who hurt,who make mistakes and who are growing each day. we don't look at our parents in the context of cultural upbringing and constraints and perhaps we never will. By the time you see your parents as human you will probably be really close to getting a little terrorist of your own running round,depleting your resources,time and energy who you also love so much. It isn't easy being a father. A lot of our fathers endured strained or borderline abusive relationships with their fathers(sometimes mothers) or no relationship which they took out on us. There's no relationship that can replace your relationship with your father. I'm saying this with the most kick-ass mother the world has ever known. There's no one like a father. We expect our fathers to show love in the ways that we understand and if not then they should be better fathers. They should be the dads that


It's sad that I was the only example of power you knew. When you were fighting for power you were inextricably also fighting for the right to oppress because that was the only manifestation of power and authority that you saw through me. This broadly applies to struggles and movements in any situation. From a bird's eye view, we can see passionate people excusing the inexcusable in the name of liberation. We can see the dreamers and visionaries become butchers and mercenaries. It's not difficult to see how that slippery slope turns into tumbling and free-falling. Living an experience creates an indomitable passion in our hearts and it's passion that drives us to push through unimaginable horrors and it pushes for devotion to the cause beyond logic. Passion however gives us an incomparable blind-spot to alternative opinions. We acknowledge the power of constructive dialogue until the moment where we are the affected and the advocates. At that poi

Social Impact Disillusion

There is no quicker or more effective way to get disillusioned than to work for a social-impact organisation. Organisations which presumptuously claim to change lives have been known to take no prisoners in ensuring that we are assured that we are a broken people. 1. You engage in tons of activities which are all flash and no substance. You engage in report after validation after stakeholders meeting after conference after sensitization after luncheon after dinner after report launch after research after report... You thought you were going to be a world changer. Ha. The organisations organise marches,press conferences,benchmarking,consultative dialogues and the list continue. When you do question the efficacy, you shall be educated to NGO precision on why all these things are needed before an effective intervention. The elephants in the room hire you for your creative youth and out-of-the-box ideas until you DARE suggest change. That's when you're taught a

Political Apathy is a Zero-Sum Game

"I don't like politics so I just keep off it." I love how from that statement, politics sounds like a mutually respectful relationship that will leave you alone if you're not interested. I need to learn to read political posts I am not comfortable with. We find ourselves, through our upbringing, politically swayed towards one side of the divide,unknowingly. Sometimes, what we think is rationale is post-justification of our choices to make them sound well thought out. I thin k you should learn to do so,too. A lot of what we think we know is a lie based to perpetuate the status quo. We need to more effectively communicate the connection between politics and people's everyday struggles and only then will we have a more civically engaged populace.  That's one of the most complex tasks for political communication. This isn't just to the lower income cadre as commonly perpetuated in the wrung out and fossilised school of thought that p

Let's Learn from Social Media Discussions

Online discussions are but controlled keyboard bar fights. We are not seeking knowledge but rather affirmation. This is why we block/unfriend people who hold opinions contrary to what we believe in. There are special exceptions who we don't need in our lives but more time than not,it's an ego trip. The worst part about having passion is that it blinds us to external logic. We go out in defence of our cause and can't for the life of us understand why people don't understand it like you do. We seek to spread our wisdom to lesser mortals and uplift their way of thinking. We don't ever think we are wrong and our friends are always a click away at the comments section to ward off any alternative thoughts. who told you,you could have those? We are in an online bubble and in all our bubbles we are king. We ask people not to take our social media presence as representations of who we are but take it as an affront to our dignity when someone expr

Religion and Education as a Tool for Oppression

Two of the most potent tools for oppression are education and religion. It's a subtle way of placating the masses and a tried and tested tool, worldwide. Rtd. Dic. Moi was passionate about Kenyans being Christians/religious and hired Malkiat Singh to be one of the primary pacification tools of the regime through his inaccurate and overtly misleading books. His insistence on increasing our educational capacity but concurrent rigidity in having control over the content worked t o his advantage and had us educated thoroughly without any particular substance. His success is also visible in the way people defend his legacy of wanton looting and repression. I hear people talk about how he provided free milk for primary schools. How is it 2017 and people still think that this milk was free? He was spending taxpayer money to buy milk. We had milk as part of our national budget. Moi pillaged this nation, tortured, killed, maimed and made us an economic wasteland but was alw


In my current reason to wake up that helps me avoid poverty and homelessness, we get tonnes and tonnes of project/ event/ program proposals. The one thing they always lack is value proposition. They're usually passionate and self- centred so very little thought is given towards the practicality of the proposal, the fine print of execution but most importantly, the benefits accrued to the other party. What will our organisation get from it? Predictable reply: We will put your logo on our promotional material and mention you during the event. What else? We're doing what your organisation is doing so you should support us. So what exactly do we do? Vaguely explains why they don't think Coldplay is a rock band Have you gone through our website or social media pages to know exactly what we stand for and the projects we have been involved in? No, but... How can you offer us value? You tell me. You know the organisation best so I think you would be the best person t

Artists Rule The World

Art and music are a rejoinder to the political comedy with human repercussions that we live in. Music is a mirror but music is a lamp too, to a country in need of hope. Hope is fast fading not because of where we are but because when we close our eyes to dream, that’s where it ends. That’s where the cookie crumbles. The invisibility of an alternative future is the thorny bed upon which change dies. Only in faith and in hope do we dare. Only in faith and hope do we work so har d to believe. Hope is the currency of progress and development. Artists are the consciousness of a people and the voice of the world. You're made for much more than more. Make the people cry. Make them weep. Make them think of death and despair. Make them gnash their teeth and laugh. May they think of you and squirm in their seats. Offend them. It’s from your absurdity that science was born, from your deviance that nations were built and from your transcendent truth that the world happens, still.May they thin

The Auditor General's 2014/2015 Expenditure Report

The Auditor General’s report on 2014/2015 expenditure is a shocking (to some) portrayal of mismanagement, incompetence and financial gymnastics that has dominated public spending and resource allocation in Kenya. Select parts of it will help expound on my point: The County Governments allocation for the year 2014/2015 was based on the audited revenue for the year 2009/2010, since the audited financial statements for 2010/2011- 2013/2014 had not been approved by the National Assembly. The County Governments expenditure has been accounted for and reported individually and the respective audit reports issued. Parliament has not audited the accounts from 2010. We have had 4 financial years without audited reports with the Public Accounts Committee firmly in place. What exactly has PAC been doing since then? If an organisation ran that way, KRA would have shut them down without notice but malfeasance by our primary oversight public body has gone unabated and the lack of consequence